Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Ann Arbor, MI
Comparison of features: Cauc. Bukh. Afgh. Mil. Khyber
Wide at the root, narrows toward
the tip NO YES NO YES
Suspended edge up YES NO YES NO
Tucked under the belt NO YES NO YES
Eared YES NO YES NO
# of rivets 2-3 4-5 3 3-5
Bolster NO Variable YES YES
Grip strap NO YES Variable YES
Small, rounded pommel YES +/-none Large +/- none
From there I conclude that Afghani military "pseudoshashka" shares quite a lot of features with the Caucasian one ( transmitted through the Cossacks), whereas Bukharan guardless saber shares a lot of features with Khyber and virtually none with the Caucasian pattern.
If anybody wants to offer modifications, you are more than welcome.
Just I am not sure about the weight: the proverb about shashka being light, fast etc ( see Gavin's entry) referred to the earliest examples carried by Circassians. We know very, very few true Circassian samples, the majority of the 19th century examples are from Daghestan, Chechnya and Georgia proper ( Tiflis) Those were not as massive as Afghani military "pseudoshashkas", but still had quite a mass to them. Many used European cavalry blades
PS, I can't seem to format the table properly. Anybody can help?